at the Citizen Power Alliance 2010 Wind Conference
Research: Wind power pricier, emits more CO2 than thought
|Fresh contenders have entered the UK wind power debate, as a turbines expert funded by the Renewable Energy Foundation publishes an investigation into a hotly-disputed subject - the variability in output to be expected of a large UK windfarm base.|
In a just-released article for the journal Energy Policy, titled Will British weather provide reliable electricity?, consulting engineer Jim Oswald and his co-authors model the output to be expected from a large, 25+ gigawatt UK windfarm collection of the type the government says it would like to see in service by 2020. Wind is generally seen as the renewable technology best suited to the UK climate, and so it forms the bulk of most renewables plans for Blighty.
One of the most frequent criticisms levelled at wind power is variability. That is, when the wind drops (or blows too hard) the windmills stop spinning and you get no power. To begin with, Oswald simulates the output rises and falls that might result from a lot of windfarms distributed around the UK by using Met Office archived data from different points up and down the land. Many wind advocates have argued that with enough windfarms, widely enough distributed, you would get more reliable power output as some windmills would always have wind.
Oswald's analysis says this isn't true, with calm conditions across pretty much all the UK being fairly regular events.
Analysis from 1996 to 2005 shows similar results: large, rapid, and frequent changes of power output being common occurrences ... any national power system has to manage under the worst case conditions likely to occur ... These are not extreme cases, whose frequency is so low as to render the events negligible. Rather, these are representative ...
(Click to read entire article)
posted by CITIZEN POWER ALLIANCE at 7:43 AM - permanent link
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